When the cat’s away, the mice will play

We had the best time today.

The entire school and almost the entire staff went to a big celebration in a park, and we had the school to ourselves. Three kids were absent today, as was Ali, so it was me, Jan (my para), and 12 preschoolers.

We went on an exploration adventure, starting with the basement. We bumped into the head janitor, who took us into their dark and mysterious lair, and even down to the sub-basement to see the boiler room. The kids were thrilled. Then we went up staircases that we don’t usually use, visited every floor, peeked in windows, did a class visit to a boys’ bathroom, and one to a girls’ bathroom, ran around wild in the upstairs gym, visited the behavior lady (who hasn’t met any of my angels all year), peeked into the teacher’s lounge (the school secretary came by just then and was horrified by the thought I was going to take them inside, so we just peeked), and then ran down the hall by kindergarten.

Me being me, we normally walk in a line, in ABC order (I guess I mentioned that before), with hands on our elbows, and we are always very quiet. These things help us to be safe, and to be respectful of all the other children and adults working in our building.

Today, since no one was around, they got to walk in a clump, talk loudly, lie down on the floor, and swing their arms freely.  (They understood clearly that this was a once-only deal, and that we go back to our normal line on Monday.)  When we got the kindergarten hall, I explained that this would be the only time in their entire lives when they would be allowed to run in the hall, and then had them go one at a time down to the end, where Jan was waiting.  They ran with glee.

Today was, in a word, awesome.

I bet it’s the one thing they remember from this year!


3 thoughts on “When the cat’s away, the mice will play

  1. I started doing it because they would touch each other, pull down art from the walls, hit each other, tug each other’s hair, etc. This reminds us not to touch. Some people think it’s weird, but it works beautifully.

  2. What fun! You let the kids activlely explore their enviroment. I’m glad you got it through to them that running around the halls was a once in a lifetime deal. I couldn’t imagine what would happen when you had 12 preschoolers running around wherever they wanted. It’s great that you took the time to get out of the classroom when you had the chance. School isn’t all about the classroom. Those kids got a day of learning about the world around them that also taught them respect for their enviroment.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s